Netflix's Live-Action 'Cowboy Bebop' Series Casts John Cho As The "Impossibly Cool" Lead

Netflix's live-action Cowboy Bebop series has lassoed its cast. In an inspired piece of casting, John Cho has been cast as Spike Siegel, the bounty hunter who leads a motley crew aboard the spaceship Bebop, in the live-action adaptation of the seminal genre-bending anime series created by Shinichiro Watanabe. Joining Cho in the Cowboy Bebop live-action cast are Mustafa Shakir, Daniella Pineda, and Alex Hassell.

Netflix announced that John Cho will be leading the Cowboy Bebop live-action cast that includes Mustafa Shakir as Jet Black, Daniella Pineda as Faye Valentine, and Alex Hassell as Vicious. Described as a "jazz-inspired, genre-bending story of a rag-tag crew of bounty hunters on the run from their pasts, as they hunt down the solar system's most dangerous criminals," the series is based on Shinichiro Watanabe's acclaimed anime series of the same name that initially ran from 1998 to 1999.

Here are the character details via Netflix:

  • JOHN CHO (Star Trek, Searching) as Spike Spiegel: Spike Spiegel is an impossibly cool "cowboy" (bounty hunter) with a deadly smile, a wry wit, and style to spare. He travels the solar system with his ex-cop partner, Jet, pursuing the future's most dangerous bounties with a combination of charm, charisma — and deadly Jeet Kune Do.
  • MUSTAFA SHAKIR (Marvel's Luke Cage) as Jet Black: Jet Black was one of the few honest cops in the solar system before an ultimate betrayal robbed him of all that he loved, forcing him into a vagabond life of hunting bounties to put food on the table. Jet is an inveterate jazz enthusiast and Captain of the Bebop.
  • DANIELLA PINEDA (Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom; What/If) as Faye Valentine: Faye Valentine is a bold, brash and unpredictable bounty hunter. Suffering from amnesia after years of being cryogenically frozen, Faye does whatever it takes to survive. Whether she's lying, stealing, or just being a thorn in Spike and Jet's side.
  • ALEX HASSELL (The Red Sea Diving Resort; Suburbicon) as Vicious: A man who thoroughly enjoys a good kill, Vicious is the Syndicate's most notorious hitman. He's also Spike Spiegel's ex-partner and arch-enemy.
  • We knew Watanabe was on board as a consultant for the series when Netflix first announced it back in November, but this stellar cast has turned Cowboy Bebop from a toss-up to a must-see. Cho's casting in particular is cause for celebration — the Searching actor has long deserved his shot to be an action star, and his charisma has shone through in all the projects he's been cast in. And now he gets a chance with one of the coolest characters ever rendered to the screen. I have no doubt that he can bring to life the swagger and confidence of Spike Siegel, who is famously based on the iconic Japanese actor Yusaku Matsuda.

    The diverse cast he leads is a smart choice on Netflix's part as well — the series is a western-noir-meets-space-opera, and its interstellar setting lends to the multiracial bounty hunter crew. Watanabe himself envisioned Cowboy Bebop as "multinational rather than stateless," though hopefully Netflix won't make the series as Eurocentric as past space westerns have been, as the anime author has said that he was "repelled" by the notion of the United States as the center of the world in his series.

    Alex Garcia Lopez (Daredevil and The Punisher) will direct the first two episodes in a 10-episode series, while Andre Nemec, Josh Appelbaum, Jeff Pinkner and Scott Rosenberg of Midnight Radio will serve as showrunners/executive producers.